Nearly 175,000 Missouri senior citizens have signed up for the state program that helps offset prescription drug costs, but that’s not enough say state officials who are pushing for more to enroll.

Missouri RX supplements Medicare Part D, the federal prescription drug program with the infamous donut hole. Medicare Part D pays for prescriptions up to a point, then doesn’t pay anything until picking up coverage again, creating a period of non-coverage popularly known as the donut hole.

Sara Anderson with the Department of Social Services says the state estimates that nearly 43,000 eligible senior citizens haven’t enrolled. State records indicate that 217,430 Missourians are eligible for Mo RX. To be eligible, a senior citizens must be enrolled in Medicare Part D and have an incomes below 200% of the federal poverty rate. That poverty rate translates roughly into $19,600 for a single person and $26,400 for a couple.

Anderson says the state believes awareness of the program needs to be raised, especially in rural Missouri.

Mo RX also provides a resource to help compare drug prices. A Web site uses specific information to calculate prescription costs at various pharmacies near where the person lives.


Download/listen Brent Martin reports (:60 MP3)